The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index, posting another large gain in May, is now at its highest level in eight months, according to a Tuesday report.
The Index now stands at 54.9, up from 40.8 in April, according to The Conference Board. The Present Situation Index increased to 28.9 from 25.5 last month. The Expectations Index rose to 72.3 from 51.0 in April.
The 28-point jump in confidence over April and May is the biggest two-month rally since records began in 1967, Bloomberg reports. The measure reached its lowest point ever in February, with a reading of 25.3. Consumer confidence was projected to rise to 42.6, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of 70 economists. Forecasts ranged from 38.5 to 47.
“Continued gains in the Present Situation Index indicate that current conditions have moderately improved, and growth in the second quarter is likely to be less negative than in the first,” said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center, in a released statement. “Looking ahead, consumers are considerably less pessimistic than they were earlier this year, and expectations are that business conditions, the labor market and incomes will improve in the coming months. While confidence is still weak by historical standards, as far as consumers are concerned, the worst is now behind us.”